Man booked for sexually assaulting granddaughter in Sheikhupura

Teenager was being violated for months in Sharaqpur, a town in Sheikhupura district

Muhammad Shahzad October 27, 2019

LAHORE: The harshest betrayal occurs at the hands of those who are sworn to protect us.

A man in Sharaqpur, a town in Sheikhupura district, was booked for sexually assaulting his 13-year-old granddaughter for four months. The incident took place in a relatively conservative area of Punjab at an approximate distance of 40 kilometres from Lahore.

According to the complaint registered at the police station by the victim’s brother, Muhammad Ismail sexually assaulted F* for several months. He maintained that he learnt of his sister’s ordeal through his mother, the suspect’s daughter.

“He [suspect] violated the sanctity of the grandfather-granddaughter bond by sexually assaulting my sister,” stated the victim’s brother. He demanded that justice be ensured for the victim.

F* belongs to a working class family and has six siblings.

The case was initially reported on October 25, just a few days after the prime suspect in the Chunian sodomy-cum-murder case was arrested by a joint investigation team (JIT), pointing to a systemic failure in effectively addressing such cases, each of which is more horrifying than the next. Just a mere few days after the Chunian case was reported, a major child sexual abuse scandal was reported in Faisalabad, with locals claiming that more than 30 children had been sexually assaulted.

In September 2019, a non-governmental organisation (NGO) working for children’s rights revealed that at least 1,304 cases of child sexual abuse were reported in the media in Pakistan during the first six months of the current year.

Out of these, the victims were identified as 729 girls and 575 boys. Around 12 boys and girls were murdered after being sexually assaulted, the report added.

More data from Sahil shows that at least 3,832 cases of child sexual abuse were reported in 2018; this means that around 10 cases were reported daily. This number witnessed an increase of more than 11% compared to 2017, during which 3,445 cases were reported.

However, these numbers have not translated into concrete steps and a clearly demarcated policy to deal with the most vulnerable section of society at a federal and provincial level.

*Name withheld to protect identity 

Published in The Express Tribune, October 27th, 2019.


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